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Monday, January 14, 2019

January 2019 Shale Activity Maps Published by ODNR

Utica Starts 2019 with Drop in Rig Count, Goes Over 2,500 Wells Drilled

WEEK ENDING 01/05/19

New permits issued last week: 11 (Previous week: 4)  +7
Total horizontal permits issued: 2968 (Previous week: 2957)  +11
Total horizontal wells drilled: 2498 (Previous week: 2491)  +7
Total horizontal wells producing: 2124 (Previous week: 2120)  +4
Utica rig count: 17 (Previous week: 19)  -2

WEEK ENDING 01/12/19

New permits issued last week: 7 (Previous week: 11)  -4
Total horizontal permits issued: 2976 (Previous week: 2968)  +8
Total horizontal wells drilled: 2505 (Previous week: 2498)  +7
Total horizontal wells producing: 2128 (Previous week: 2124)  +4
Utica rig count: 18 (Previous week: 17)  +1

Thursday, January 3, 2019

Groundwork is Laid for Belmont County Cracker Plant, But Still No Decision from PTT

From The Times:
The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency has issued an air permit for a potential cracker plant in southeastern Ohio, about 65 miles southwest of Beaver County. 
The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency has issued an air permit for a potential cracker plant in southeastern Ohio, about 65 miles southwest of Beaver County. 
The decision is seen as the last major regulatory hurdle needed to be cleared before the two companies overseeing the potential project make a final investment decision. Those two companies are Thailand-based PTTGCA and South Korea-based Daelim Industrial Co. 
If those two companies agree to build the ethane cracker plant, the development could look a lot like what’s happened in Beaver County. According to a news release from the Ohio EPA, the potential cracker plant could result in hundreds of permanent jobs and thousands of construction jobs in the region.
Read the whole story by clicking here. 

New Ohio Law Clarifies Requirements for Oil and Gas Landmen

From McDonald Hopkins' Business Advocate:
Since the Ohio Supreme Court’s September decision in Dundics et al. v. Eric Petroleum Corp., Ohio’s oil and gas landmen have found themselves in a precarious position. That decision held that oil and gas landmen, specifically leasing agents and mineral rights brokers, are subject to the requirements of R.C. 4735. Effectively, that statute would require landmen who negotiate oil and gas leases or the sale of mineral rights, as well as pipeline rights-of-way, to become licensed real estate brokers, or face potentially severe penalties.

Because the requirements of R.C. 4735 bear little to no relation to their long-established and highly-specialized profession, many landmen had hoped for a wholesale evisceration of the Dundics holding by the Ohio General Assembly. On December 19, they received good, if slightly disappointing news in the form of SB 263. That bill, which passed in the Ohio Senate by a 31-0 vote and was signed into law by Gov. John Kasich, generally resolves the most burdensome implications raised by Dundics, but also includes some compromises and additional requirements that many will undoubtedly find bothersome.

SB 263 adds section GG to R.C. 4735.01, defining an “Oil and gas land professional” as “a person regularly engaged in the preparation and negotiation of agreements for the purpose of exploring for, transporting, producing, or developing oil and gas mineral interests, including, but not limited to, oil and gas leases and pipeline easements.”
Read more by clicking here. 

Oil in 2019 - What Do the Experts Expect?

From Bloomberg:
Oil had a tumultuous 2018, with prices rising to a four-year high in October before plunging more than $30 in the following months. Oversupply and demand worries are high on the concern list for the industry, making volatility a buzzword this year as well.

There are other power dynamics at play. OPEC’s Viennese waltz in early December was a perfect example of a shift, with Russia brokering a deal to curb output and sharing the reins with traditional leader Saudi Arabia. President Donald Trump’s tweets demanding lower oil prices and U.S. shale producers pumping out unprecedented volumes of crude, threaten to undo all of OPEC and Russia’s years-long work.

There are “major uncertainties” and forecasting trends in 2019 is “even more hazardous than usual,” said Neil Atkinson, head of oil markets at the International Energy Agency. Geopolitical uncertainty is a serious risk to the industry, according to Ryan Lance, chief executive officer of ConocoPhillips. Still, there is likely to be a lack of “shock and awe” in OPEC policy, which could temper volatility, said Greg Sharenow, a portfolio manager at Pacific Investment Management Co.
To see what different insiders have to say, click here and read the rest of the article. 

Weirton-Steubenville Corridor Feels Jobs Impact of Shale Development

From The Intelligencer:
The shale gas industry’s impact on the Weirton-Steubenville metropolitan area is expanding. 
The Associated General Contractors of America reported the largest percentage gain in construction jobs in the nation — 26 percent, or 500 jobs — occurred in the Weirton-Steubenville corridor, which consists of Brooke and Hancock counties in West Virginia and Jefferson County in Ohio. 
AGCA said there are now 2,400 people working in the construction industry in the Weirton-Steubenville corridor, up from 1,900. 
“It tells you we’re reaping the benefits of the growth in the shale gas industry,” said Pat Ford, executive director of the Business Development Corp. of the Northern Panhandle, citing investments in public infrastructure, pipelines and private investments in energy, the chemical industry, value-added metals, transportation logistics, and retail services.
Read on by clicking here. 

Activists Still Fighting Against NEXUS Pipeline

From Law360:
The Ohio city of Oberlin along with a fellow opponent of the $2 billion Nexus pipeline told the D.C. Circuit that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission was wrong to approve the project, saying its need was overstated and it was not in the public interest. 
Oberlin and the Coalition to Reroute Nexus said Monday that much of the pipeline’s capacity was not committed and that a significant amount of the existing commitment was with affiliates of the owners of the pipeline, Enbridge Inc. and DTE Energy Co., which each have a 50 percent share of Nexus. That low commitment was part of the reason the project couldn’t demonstrate it was truly needed, according to the brief. 
That was one of several alleged faults highlighted in Oberlin’s petition, which also said the pipeline was not approved under the correct section of the Natural Gas Act. The project includes about 255 miles of greenfield pipeline and affects areas in Michigan and Ohio.
Continue reading by clicking here. 

Chamber of Commerce Blames Environmental Activists for $91 Billion in Economic Loss During 2018

From the Washington Examiner:
The Chamber of Commerce and trade unions took aim at anti-fossil fuel activists in releasing a scathing report on Tuesday that concluded that their form of environmentalism slowed economic activity by over $91 billion in the U.S. in 2018. 
“Taken together, anti-energy activism has helped prevent at least $91.9 billion of economic activity in the United States, which is larger than the entire economies of 12 states,” according to the report, “Infrastructure Lost: Why America Cannot Afford To ‘Keep It In the Ground.’” 
The report was issued by the Chamber’s Global Energy Institute and the Laborers’ International Union of North America. 
The Keep It In the Ground movement began in the latter years of the Obama administration, with the aim of ending all fossil fuel production by blocking pipelines, coal export terminals, and similar projects.
You can read the rest of this article by clicking here. 

New Oil and Gas Projects to See Big Increase

From Reuters:
The number of new oil and gas projects will rise five-fold next year from a 2015 trough but overall spending is still unlikely to be enough to meet future demand, consultancy Wood Mackenzie said in a report. 
Shaken by a sharp drop in oil prices in recent months, boards are generally expected to stick to spending discipline imposed following the 2014 price crash. 
Global investment in oil and gas production, known as upstream, is expected to reach around $425 billion next year, according to WoodMac analyst Angus Rodger. 
That compares with a total spending of $770 billion in 2014, which dropped to $400 billion in 2016 and 2017.
Click here to read more of this article. 

Activists Get a Win in Settlement with Patriot Water

From the Youngstown Vindicator:
Though a lawsuit filed by an environmental group against the company Patriot Water is still pending, the recent settlement by Warren would suggest Patriot’s experiment in treating wastewater from the gas and oil industry and have it end up in the Mahoning River might be over. 
An attorney for Freshwater Accountability Project of Grand Rapids, Ohio, and Warren Law Director Greg Hicks say Warren resolved its part of the case by agreeing to pay $116,616 of Freshwater’s legal fees and no longer allowing Patriot to discharge “drilling mud,” which is wastewater from the gas and oil industry, into the city sewer system, as it did starting in 2011. 
Patriot, which is located on Sferra Avenue in the Warren Industrial Park, stopped discharging wastewater into Warren sewers June 16, 2017, after the Freshwater suit was filed June 27, 2017, and has not resumed. 
The plant is still open, however, its president, Andrew Blocksom, said earlier this month. Blocksom said he could not comment on the matter because legal action with Freshwater Accountability is still pending.
Read more by clicking here. 

Wells Drilled and Producing in Utica Shale Climbs in Latest ODNR Reports

WEEK ENDING 12/22/18

New permits issued last week: 4 (Previous week: 9)  -5
Total horizontal permits issued: 2953 (Previous week: 2953)  +-0
Total horizontal wells drilled: 2490 (Previous week: 2467)  +23
Total horizontal wells producing: 2116 (Previous week: 2088)  +28
Utica rig count: 18 (Previous week: 19 -1

WEEK ENDING 12/29/18

New permits issued last week: 4 (Previous week: 4)  +-0
Total horizontal permits issued: 2957 (Previous week: 2953)  +4
Total horizontal wells drilled: 2491 (Previous week: 2490)  +1
Total horizontal wells producing: 2120 (Previous week: 2116)  +4
Utica rig count: 19 (Previous week: 18)  +1

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